Those of us who are information consumers and see the long-term inevitability of reform should be reminded now and then that some people are completely oblivious.
This hit me again today as I read this strangely clueless article:
OLEAN â€” News that Chautauqua County was recently added to the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) list could affect law enforcement efforts in neighboring Southern Tier counties as well. […]
â€œFunding is still one of the biggest priorities,â€ said Lt. David Bentley of the Chautauqua County Sheriffâ€™s Office and a member of the Southern Tier Regional Drug Task Force for more than 20 years. â€œWe need more people for this fight weâ€™re in.â€
Since Chautauqua County was included in the HIDTA just a few weeks ago, officials are â€œstill trying to figure out what to do with HIDTA,â€ said Lt. Bentley.
Rep. Susan Brooks, R-Indiana, a former U.S. attorney from Indianapolis, said HIDTA will â€œbring another layer of bureaucracy, but it does bring a lot of resources.â€ She urged Chautauqua County to make sure it has a representative on the New York-New Jersey HIDTA in order to secure competitive funding.
Of course, the war on drugs looks a lot more interesting when your big problem is figuring out what to do with the money.
And here’s someone who clearly has not been keeping up:
Lt. Bentley said there is a lack of a deterrent for heroin and other drug sales. â€œPeople are not being put away for long enough,â€ he said, calling jail time â€œa mild to moderate business expense.â€
I was also interested by this little tidbit, where a politician seemed to momentarily recognize one of the problems of the war on drugs and then everyone’s brain immediately shuts down. Watch it happen…
Assemblyman Joseph Giglio, R-Gowanda, who also attended the roundtable held at The Depot at the Cattaraugus County Campus of Jamestown Community College, said the heroin problem has spread to all parts of the state. Interstate 88, he said, â€œis a conduitâ€ for drugs coming into the Southern Tier. Heroin use is an unintended consequence of law enforcementâ€™s fight over first prescription drugs and meth, he added.
Rep. Reed said that illegal drug use and sales doesnâ€™t end at the county line, and encouraged Chautauqua Countyâ€™s Drug Task Force and that of the city of Jamestown to continue to partner with their counterparts in area counties.